(Yicai Global) March 20 -- Net revenue at Tencent-backed online travel agency Tongcheng-Elong Holding rose 67 percent last year to CNY1.1 billion (USD170.1 million), driven by growth in ticketing sales.
Income rose 16.5 percent to CNY6.1 billion last year with the expansion mainly coming from accommodation reservations and transport ticketing, the Suzhou-based firm said in its first annual earnings call since listing in Hong Kong.
Income from accommodation bookings fell 22.5 percent to CNY1.8 billion, making up 34.8 percent of total revenue, while ticketing turnover increased nearly 52-fold to CNY3.2 billion, accounting for 61.5 percent.
Average monthly active users jumped 44.6 percent to 175 million last year, of which 140.6 million came via Tencent platforms. Paid users per month averaged 20 million, a 28.2 percent increase from 15.6 million the year before.
The firm's platform provides over 6,400 domestic and 1.1 million international flight routes operated by 438 airlines, as well as more than 1.4 million hotels and non-standard accommodation options. Users can also purchase tickets for around 310,000 bus routes and over 417 ferry lines.
The company's Vice-Chairman and President Jiang Hao has stepped down from his roles to rejoin major shareholder Ctrip.Com International as of yesterday. He was previously senior vice-president at the Chinese travel giant. He will continue as a non-executive director at Tongcheng.
Tongcheng Network and Elong were established in 2004 and 1999, respectively. The two completed a merger last March.
Tongcheng-Elong went public in Hong Kong last November and is the largest listed online travel agency listed in the special administrative region. Tencent holds 24.9 percent of its shares and Ctrip holds 24.3 percent. The firm's share price [HKG:0780] plunged 6.5 percent at today's opening before recovering slightly to close 2.3 percent down at HKD16.9 (USD2.15).
Editor: William Clegg